Crown Prince of Dubai Hamdan bin Mohammed Al Maktoum during a meeting with President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, 24 February, 2015. Drop of Light/Shutterstock
The emirate of Dubai has launched a new “Metaverse Strategy” that aims to make the city “one of the world’s top 10 metaverse economies”, United Arab Emirates (UAE) news agency WAM reported on 18 July.
The Dubai Metaverse Strategy, introduced by crown prince Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, is looking to attract more than 1,000 blockchain and metaverse companies to Dubai, as well as support over 40,000 virtual jobs by 2030. The move falls in line with Dubai’s goal of becoming a global tech capital, focused primarily on artificial intelligence and web3. According to the announcement, the “two key enablers of the metaverse” — virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) — have already created around 6,700 jobs in the area, contributing $500 million to the UAE economy.
Under this new strategy, Dubai will try and attract metaverse companies and projects from abroad through the use of accelerator and incubator programs. Research and development (R&D) collaborations will also be encouraged, in order to enhance the metaverse’s economic contributions. The city will also provide metaverse education support to developers and content creators.
The strategy will promote the use of web3 technology in creating new governmental work models in the tourism, education, retail, remote work, healthcare, and legal sectors. It also suggests the full deployment of 5G networks in Dubai in order to enable edge computing, which will allow data to be collected, stored, and processed through local smart devices and networks, instead of the cloud.
Dubai is not the only jurisdiction to try and boost metaverse development. Last week, Shanghai laid out its plans to focus heavily on metaverse projects, with the city government planning to establish a 10 billion yuan (around $1.5 billion) industry fund, which will be used to support 10 “leading” companies and 100 small-sized firms focused on metaverse development.